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Twitch Bans Explicit Deepfakes Following Atrioc Controversy




Twitch is updating its guidelines following the recent explicit deepfake controversy, in a bid to "protect women streamers." This comes after several prominent women on Twitch were found to have their images stolen and exploited on a deepfake pornography site, which was then inadvertently promoted by another streamer, Atrioc.

Announcing the updated rules, Twitch says that this explicit deepfake material has "no place" on the site, describing it as "personally violating and beyond upsetting." To combat this, existing punishments for sharing pornography on stream will be made even more severe in cases of "non-consensual exploitative images" (NCEI), reflecting the distress the material causes its victims.

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The update was shared in a blog post from Twitch, addressing the situation with Atrioic that took place in January.

"Deepfake porn isn’t a problem on Twitch, but it’s a terrible issue that some streamers (almost exclusively women) may face on the internet at large," says Twitch.

The post goes on to explain that anyone who intentionally shares this non-consensual adult content will face an indefinite suspension, even on the first offence. This will be the case regardless of the context in which it is shown, with the site adding that users will still be banned if they show off deepfake sites to "express outrage or disapproval" with the material.

Having no exceptions in place for the context in which these images and videos are shown is likely to ensure that others who are not already aware of the websites in question don't come to know of their existence through Twitch. Indeed, as we saw with the Atrioc case, being shown for just a second on stream was enough to direct a lot of attention to the deepfake site in question. Although in this instance, the owner decided to shut the site down after QTCinderella threatened legal action. It remains to be seen if these new guidelines are enough to combat the hurt caused by these sites.

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